The Endocrine System During Menopause

Changing hormone levels during menopause affect different glands in the body – these glands make up what is called The Endocrine System. This system controls growth, metabolism and reproduction. This system must constantly readjust itself to work effectively. The endocrine system is indispensable for life! 

Menopause is the last stage of a gradual biological process in which the ovaries reduce their production of female sex hormones. 

This is why supporting these glands during the menopause transition can be hugely beneficial. In homeopathy we do this specifically through “organ support remedies” and “homeobotanicals”.

During the reproductive years, the pituitary gland (part of the endocrine system) in the brain generates hormones that cause a new egg to be released from its follicle each month. The follicle also increases production of the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone. During menopause, the pituitary gland stops producing FSH (manages menstrual cycle/stimulates ovaries to produce eggs). 

Pituitary symptoms 

A hormone imbalance can cause physical or mood changes, anxiety, brain fog, memory loss or depression. 

The ovaries begin to decline in hormone production during the mid-thirties. By the early to mid-fifties, periods finally end altogether. However, estrogen production does not completely stop. The ovaries decrease their output significantly, but still may produce a small amount. Also, another form of estrogen is produced in fat tissue with help from the Adrenal Glands (also part of the endocrine system).

Adrenal symptoms

Fatigue, body aches or pains, nausea or vomiting, weight loss or changes in skin. 

The Thyroid Gland (part of the endocrine system) job is to manufacture the thyroid hormone that regulates metabolism. These powerful hormones affect nearly every cell, tissue, and organ in the body. 

During menopause the decline in this production (producing too much or too little) can cause symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats.

Thyroid symptoms

Weight gain or loss, chilly or too hot, difficulty sleeping, palpitations or gastro problems. 

Another organ interlinked with menopause symptoms and part of the endocrine system is the Pancreas – responsible for the regulation of our blood sugar levels. 

Reduced estrogen levels can lead to insulin resistance, which is when your body does not respond to insulin well and blood sugar increases. 

Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas, which helps your body use glucose for the energy it needs and then store the remainder. 

The hormonal shifts in menopause play a big part in where women tend to gain weight. Premenopausal women often gain weight around the thighs and buttocks but during and after menopause, women tend to gain weight around the abdominal area.

Pancreas symptoms

Pain in abdomen after eating, indigestion, greasy stools, swelling/sore feeling in upper belly or tenderness in stomach. 

Blood sugar level can have an impact on your sleep due to a rise in cortisol or drop in cortisol (the stress hormone). The body will produce too much cortisol (high levels waking you) or a drop in cortisol (low levels waking you) – either way balancing your blood sugar level has a direct impact on you sleep and weight. 

Blood sugar symptoms 

Feeling tired/weak or shaky, more thirsty than usual or more of an appetite, difficulty concentrating or confused thinking, irregular sleep and weight loss, 

Your homeopath will work on a plan with you after a detailed discussion of all your menopausal symptoms. They will then prescribe remedies that support your endocrine system. Going though your specific set of menopausal symptoms will guide your homeopath to the gland that’s in need of most attention.  

You can email the team on if you have any questions or would like to know how your symptoms can be helped with homeopathy. 

© Annemarie O’Shea –  Homeopathy East Cork

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